Willie Coffey MSP

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Willie Coffey MSP

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  • Member for: Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley
  • Region: South Scotland
  • Party: Scottish National Party

Willie is a member of the following Committees:

Willie is a member of the following Cross-Party Groups:

Parliamentary Activities

Search for other Speeches made by Willie Coffey (Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley) (SNP)

European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey (Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley) (SNP)

My attention was drawn to the information on page 2 about the appointment of the commissioners. We can see that they will be concentrating their efforts on some clear and focused themes and projects including jobs, growth, investment, and the connected digital single market. As you know, convener, I am particularly interested in how that develops in the European Union and how it might affect Scotland. Will there be an opportunity for us to do a little bit more work on that so that we can understand exactly what the commissioners’ roles and remits might be with regard to the digital single market? I think that that would be useful work for the committee to engage with.



European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey

I notice that the bulletin also mentions one or two awards to support transport infrastructure projects in Scotland. It is a great report, but it would be really helpful if there was from time to time a summary page of awards that are made to Scotland. Our late friend and colleague Helen Eadie used to raise questions about keeping an eye on what awards Scotland was or was not receiving. Such a summary would be useful. The suggestion relates to Jamie McGrigor’s comment last week about strengthening the case for being in Europe and being able to demonstrate and articulate the advantages that being in Europe brings. A lot of good work goes into the bulletin, but it can be useful to summarise the awards from various programmes and their value to Scotland. It would be lovely if you could make contact with whoever compiles the bulletin, convener, to ask whether that is possible.



European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey

Good morning, cabinet secretary. I will pick up the theme of youth employment that Alex Rowley mentioned.

You mentioned in your opening statement that Scotland has the only youth employment minister in Europe and that we appear to be bucking the statistical trend. I noticed from the “Brussels Bulletin” this morning that

“23% of young job-seekers aged 15–24 … could not find a job in January 2014.”

I think that there are about 4 million youngsters in that age bracket. Is there much interest from Europe in what Scotland has done in appointing a dedicated minister? What lessons can we learn?



European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey

A European commissioner for youth employment would be a fantastic statement.



European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey

You mentioned the overlap with Italy in relation to some of the key areas that we like to focus on. The digital single market is one area that is of interest to me and the committee, which is also in the Italian work programme for the next six months.

Do you see any further progress being made on European mobile phone charges? I know that you made some progress recently in flattening out roaming charges, but we all know that, as soon as we walk in to another jurisdiction with a mobile phone, we tend to put it in a drawer and not use it until we come back home. Do you foresee any work to establish a real single market in relation to charging for mobile communications throughout the European Union?



European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey

I would like to carry on with the theme that Clare Adamson raised. You said that Italy’s three priorities for the presidency were being job-friendly, being closer to European citizens, and strengthening the role of the European Union in relation to foreign policy. We could argue that the second priority could be most important, because of the issues that you have mentioned and the rise of Europhobic parties in the EU.

As we know, Italy is a founding member of the European Union, and is held in great respect in Scotland because of the role that it has played over many years. I certainly believe that Italy can play an important role in reaching out to citizens in the EU. How can we connect more directly with citizens on the ground? If you look at the distance between citizens and government institutions, there is a greater distance between them and the institutions of the EU than there is between them and those of their own national parliaments. How can we bridge that gap and bring the European Union institutions closer to ordinary citizens, so that they understand what is going on there and the benefits that the EU can deliver for ordinary people?



European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey

Living in Scotland and the United Kingdom, I see that the media—particularly the newspapers in the UK—are very hostile to Europe, and the population pick that up, which leads to some other circumstances that you mentioned. Is there a role for digital technology in reaching out to ordinary citizens in Europe to provide a counterbalancing positive message?



European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey

That is encouraging.

My other question is on Italy’s priorities and the digital single market that we are about to go into. Does Italy consider trying to flatten out the cost of mobile telephone charges throughout the European Union to be a priority? Those charges vary considerably. Is there a move from the Italian Government to do some work on that?



European and External Relations Committee 09 October 2014 : Thursday, October 09, 2014
Willie Coffey

Thank you very much.



Public Audit Committee 08 October 2014 : Wednesday, October 08, 2014
Willie Coffey (Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley) (SNP)

The message from what Bruce Crawford said was to recognise that performance in A and E has significantly improved over the years rather than deteriorated. I am less concerned about whether we achieve the 95 per cent target because, only a number of years ago, performance was 84 per cent and that was hailed as fantastic. Statistics can tell us different things and we can use them in different ways. As a member of the Public Audit Committee, I am more concerned to hear from witnesses that there are systems and processes in place to continually improve and address the issues that arise from time to time.

I am encouraged by many of the things that I have heard during this and previous meetings. I am particularly encouraged by what we heard from the NHS Tayside representatives who came last week. Bruce Crawford raised their issue—they talked about signposting and trying to deal with patients as they arrive to send them to the appropriate care route. I sincerely hope that such lessons are being learned and shared with the rest of the boards.

Can you say with any confidence that we will get to the 95 per cent? Do we have to? You said, Mr Gray, that it might not be appropriate for some patients to be pulled out of the system within four hours. I was quite struck by that. As politicians, we will react to the performance figure when you release it regardless of whether you achieve the 95 per cent target, but I would like to hear your view of that as health professionals. Are we going in the right direction? Are we improving the service? Will we reach the 95 per cent target? Do we really have to achieve it?

Vote DetailMSP VoteResult

S4M-11123 Joe FitzPatrick on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau: Business Motion—That the Parliament
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YesCarried

S4M-11114.2 Kenny MacAskill: Policing—As an amendment to motion S4M-11114 in the name of Graeme Pear
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YesCarried

S4M-11114 Graeme Pearson: Policing—That the Parliament acknowledges that policing in Scotland contin
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YesCarried

S4M-11116.1.1 Patrick Harvie: Scotland’s Future—As an amendment to amendment S4M-11116.1 in the name
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YesCarried

S4M-11116.1 Nicola Sturgeon: Scotland’s Future—As an amendment to motion S4M-11116 in the name of Jo
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YesCarried

S4M-11116 Johann Lamont: Scotland’s Future—That the Parliament recognises the result of the independ
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YesCarried

Amendment 61 moved by Elaine Murray on motion S4M-11101 Kenny MacAskill: Courts Reform (Scotland) Bi
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NoDefeated

Amendment 62 moved by Margaret Mitchell on motion S4M-11101 Kenny MacAskill: Courts Reform (Scotland
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NoDefeated

Amendment 63 moved by Margaret Mitchell on motion S4M-11101 Kenny MacAskill: Courts Reform (Scotland
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NoDefeated

Amendment 64 moved by Margaret Mitchell on motion S4M-11101 Kenny MacAskill: Courts Reform (Scotland
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NoDefeated

Search for other Motions lodged by Willie Coffey
EventIdTypeSub TypeMSP NameParty NameConstituencyRegionTitleItemTextFormattedAnswer DateAnswerStatusIdExpectedAnswerDateAnsweredByMspApprovedDateSubmissionDateMeetingDateProductionStatusIdRecordStatusIdStatus DateOnBehalfOfConsideredForMembersBusinessCrossPartySupportRegisteredInterestSupportCountSupportDateIsEventLinkCurrentMinister
Motion S4M-10321: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 12/06/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-10186: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 02/06/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-09679: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 08/04/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08817: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 21/01/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08376: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 20/11/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08319: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 14/11/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08271: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 11/11/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-07822: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 25/09/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-07817: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 25/09/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-06603: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 15/05/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Search for other Questions asked by Willie Coffey
EventIdTypeSub TypeMSP NameParty NameConstituencyRegionTitleItemTextFormattedAnswer DateAnswerStatusIdExpectedAnswerDateAnsweredByMspApprovedDateSubmissionDateMeetingDateProductionStatusIdRecordStatusIdStatus DateOnBehalfOfConsideredForMembersBusinessCrossPartySupportRegisteredInterestSupportCountSupportDateIsEventLinkCurrentMinister
Question S4O-03627: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 20/10/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03579: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 29/09/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03567: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 22/09/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03430: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 28/07/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03391: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 16/06/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03264: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 12/05/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03131: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 14/04/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03109: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 24/03/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-02951: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 17/02/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-19744: Willie Coffey, Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley, Scottish National Party, Date Lodged: 14/02/2014 Show Full Question >>

Further information

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